housing affordability is it just australia that is over priced?

is it just australia or most of the countries on this planet going through a housing affordability crisis whats it like in other parts of the world? eg engline,usa,china,japan,india,nz... etc

i know it's off topic but this is the only place i can get an intelligent answer on the topic
I'm not sure about engline, but in southern England prices are ridiculous.
Just down the road from my house a 2 bedroom tiny house in a 9m x 15m plot went for £320k.
We're having an affordability crisis at the mo. Lack of space, lack of planning, lack of foresight, stupid councils and 100,000s of immigrants haven't helped matters. I'm not having a pop at immigrants btw.
A new estate (Barratts) is going up nearby where 5m x 11m flats (appartments) are up for £180K. Affordable? Pah. Ripoff? yeah.
(This is all rural as well).
Supply and demand dear boy.
Demonic, never ming housing, it's obvious you don't do the household shopping much.
The price of vegetables now is what meat was 3 or 4 years back and meat prices are a joke, 10 years ago you couldn't give away lamb chops now they're $32.00 a Kg, even mince meat (hamburger) is $12.00 a Kg.
But the good news is, everything is going to get even more expensive !
On the back of a 6 year drought-
and the Cyclone that flattened a large part of Queenslands fruit growers and now flooding similar to the UK in the Victorian Gippsland vegetable growing area I hate to think what's ahead.
Maybe it is because there are lots of baby boomers who have the kids off their hands and are saving for their retirement and investing in houses. My parents' retirement fund is the house each side of them. More buyers than sellers = higher prices. Ditto the sharemarket going up.

Of course, when all the baby boomers do retire they will sell down their assets (in Australia they buy RVs and set off round the country as grey nomads). So in 10 years we may well see house prices going down as people sell up ordinary houses and buy into retirement villages.

Meanwhile in Sydney a million dollars will buy you a fibro cement shack on the side of the freeway. The banks will lend because they say they have the security of the property. And the poor young couple have to find $80,000pa just to pay the interest, which means the fibro shack stays that way because the young couple have no spare cash for renovations despite owning a million dollar property. I'm not sure who is making the money. The baby boomers who bought in before the boom? The banks?

In the UK I gather people are even buying up properties in France.

Is the US like this?
People in UK have been buying property in France and US (and other parts of the expanded Europe) for many many years as it is dirt cheap compared to UK houses.
Rabbit Hutch in UK = Mansion in Florida (in terms of cost).

Edited by - dippy on 30/07/2007 15:48:39


Senior Member
Here isn't better, but you can buy if you have the money...
Single house or half floor of home-building (little appartament)starts over 100k US dollars.
But if you like the country field (rural) you can buy a big house for the same amount.
The cow meat (cattle) cost 6 U$D/kg and Pig chops 8 U$D/kg, Chicken 4U$D/Kg.
The top quality meat (heifer or veal)Bistec cost 20 U$D/Kg.
Some people with money come here to buy large amount of land (really good ones, with water, trees and grass for cattle) by the reason of retirement place (investing)to live. Immigrants with money can purchase several Has. simply and without problems, some ones with lakes in it, and they put fish, rabbits and deers for hunting purposes.
The weather here are marvelous all the year (summer 25ºto 32ºC and winter 5º to 12ºC) reasonable amount of rain, no fog, sunny, low wind, rich earthground what can make grow almost anything, but the most popular here are Wheat, oats, barley, rye, soybean.
Even fruits and any vegetal, can be harvested without problems.

Reason? the young generation, sold ancient land properties of the family at low prices, only for catch the money now and go live in the city.(let's Party !)



Senior Member
It is all in supply and demand - whether in AU, NZ, UK, or here in the US. People want the house size/style and property size/location of their choice (whether for practical reasons like better schools or shorter commute or just to impress others).

I'm beyond the commute stage (semi-retired, do some consulting from home), better schools are only a factor if you have school-age children, and I don't feel the need to impress anyone. We moved to a new (to us) house a couple of years ago because the old house wasn't big enough for our children and their families to stay with us when they visited (they live 150 to 600 miles away) and the old neighborhood was going to rental property.

The new house is about 30 years old, brick, two stories plus a drive-in basement, and has a double garage. The conditioned space is about 2800 sq ft (doesn't include the garage) on a 1/2 acre lot. Nearly everything is within one mile - supermarket, deli, fast food, auto repair, library, post office, dry cleaner, bank, pharmacy. Within two miles is nearly evrything else - home/garden supply, office supplies, hospital, restaurants of many varieties, and the nearest fire/rescue station.

Choosing an older but stable (typically one house on the market each year) neighborhood meant a price of $200000US (about 80% covered by the proceeds from selling the previous house). A more "prestigious" location (gated community and/or brick signs with the subdivision name) or new construction would have been 3 to 5 times that price (staying within 20 miles of the original house).
It's a grandchild-friendly location on a cul-de-sac, with a long driveway for riding toys and a rope swing from one of the trees. The family that moved in next door with children near the ages of our grandchildren was an unpriced, but priceless, bonus.

The neighborhood has a very low crime rate, even for petty theft - the postal service, UPS, and FedEx all leave packages on the porch unless a signature is required. The only time I see a patrol car in the neighborhood is when they're watching for people running the stop signs at the tee intersection leading into the subdivision.

The house across the street was on the market earlier this year at about the same price. It sold in less than 60 days.

This is in the Atlanta, Georgia, area. An equivalent older house in the northeast US (NY, NJ) or most areas of California could easily be 5 to 7 times as much.


Same here in the USA, That is one of the reason we moved from the Chicago area. Houses and cost
of living just thru the roof. A starter home
there is around $250k now and they have the highest gas and food prices.
We moved here to southern Indiana about 10 years ago, were it about half that.


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The two-up, two-down terraced house I live in is valued around 150K GBP / $300K USD, and although in southern England it's by no means an expensive area. If this were the 1960's they would have demolished much of the area as slum clearance. New one bed flats in the area are 250K GBP / $500K USD minimum, and the developers are building 'gulag blocks' on every patch of land they can grab.

Viva la revolution - And one day we won't have to be slaves to capitalism. Hopefully ridiculously expensive, unaffordable housing is the burning touchpaper :)
I don't think you could buy any property in my village (South Lincolnshire) for under £300,000.

When you think we built the bungalow 12 years ago for about 70,000 including the land!

Surprisingly the banks are worried about rising bad debt! Don't they ever learn they went thorough this in the 90's with rising house prices fueling a spending spree on borrowed money

- Then the crunch as rates rise and the banks start foreclosing and quickly become the biggest property owner in the country.


Senior Member
<i><b> &quot;... and the developers are building 'gulag blocks' on every patch of land they can grab.&quot; </b> </i>
Yes the capitalism make havoc in housing planning.
So if anyone want one large'n beautiful spot to live when retired, call me. hehehe <img src="wink.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle>
The country field here are free of Twisters (tornado), earthquake, floodings and other calamities, but the problem is &quot;have money&quot; and keep out of the sight of politics and economists.
And of course learn Spanish (but if chinese people can... why you don't)

The big cities are another history...
Impossible traffic, block housing, some idiots and intolerant neighbours, high costs, more &quot;social life&quot; spots, more crime rate, more accidents, more hospitals, more supermarkets, more electronic-parts shops <img src="smile.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle>, less peace&amp;quiet quality of life.

&#161;Viva la Revoluci&#243;n, Carajo!
New World, Old Problems...



Senior Member
I'll add a similar tone just in case anyone thinks &quot;milk &amp; honey&quot; New Zealand ( pop. 4 million &amp; the size of UK/Japan/Italy/California)is immune from housing price hikes.

<b>It's not really the houses of course that are costly, but the land under them. </b> I live around the harbour from the NZ capital (Wellington),in a tightly held seaside village of ~5000 =&gt;<A href='http://www.usbwifi.orcon.net.nz/wifi1km.jpg ' Target=_Blank>External Web Link</a>, where 3rd &amp; 4th generation families are common -that's IF the kids can get back in!. Places are routinely demolished (or- phew-thankfully trucked away)just for the land- a near neighbour now for the 3rd time! Prices are typically US$400k (~10 years average NZ income)even for an old fisherman's cottage &quot;doer upper&quot; (the land being valued at maybe US$300k),with better places twice that. Naturally the scarce land has meant some new buildings are often hung onto cliff faces,with ONLY cable car access!

Sure- there are cheaper NZ regions (perhaps even US$150k for a family home) but they naturally have L O N G commutes or no decent local work,even though NZ is enjoying an immense boom with seemingly more work (especially rural)than people to do it.

For the Western World overall,the worrying outcome longer term is that today's kids may be facing home prices that'll throttle their eventual family size. The implications of this go beyond a microcontroller forum! Maybe the Internet will save the day, allowing &quot;work&quot; from cheaper &amp; more relaxed regions? Stan

Edited by - manuka on 30/07/2007 22:22:21
I live in either NYC or Los Angeles, so no luck here (average for a tiny apt. in manhattan is $1,000,000USD+, and average house price in LA is well over $500,000+ =) Of course, in the town in Ohio where I'm from, average house price is ~$40-60,000, but the catch is, you have to live in Ohio =)
at the moment
<A href='http://www.realestate.com.au/cgi-bin/rsearch?a=o&amp;id=103611977&amp;f=0&amp;p=10&amp;t=res&amp;ty=&amp;fmt=&amp;header=&amp;c=81185881&amp;s=nsw&amp;snf=rbs&amp;tm=1185847854' Target=_Blank>External Web Link</a> is pretty much the only thing i can afford here , trouble is it'll be a 7 hour commute to work ,we'd be on generated power/wind power/caes power
but repayments on it would only require me to go into the city's to work for 1 week out of 4 which i've already ok'd with my boss and i have family i can stay with at each end


Senior Member
Lightning Ridge - there's your power supply for starters!? Doesn't look as if you'll have to worry much about shovelling snow off the paths,floods,urban crime or even door to door salesmen...
lol, compared to where i am now i'll might miss the numerous door to door salesman , we may even get rid of the debt collectors calling for the people who used to live here
honestly i might even cry.....
we're taking the 7 hour drive out there and give the local realestate agent a real busy day looking at every house we can
from what i can tell half the town is up for sale
Whoever said it was expensive in southern UK when you get luxury like this <A href='http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/southern_counties/4060163.stm' Target=_Blank>External Web Link</a>for &#163;50k.
Got to be worth it just for the parking space.

Edited by - beaniebots on 31/07/2007 07:16:25
In actual fact for all this discussion without an understanding of local living costs, food, energy etc and salaries it is very hard to make a sensible comparison.

On the face of it I would say that the entire rest of the world is paid vastly more than we are in the UK. Compared to what they get for what they pay.

A teacher here assuming they have been teaching for 8 or 9 years and are considered to be good at their job will be on around &#163;30,000 a year. <A href='http://www.teachers.org.uk/story.php?id=3594' Target=_Blank>External Web Link</a>

Most of the property in the south is going to be about 5 to 10 x their salary which seems to compare with others.


New Member
True, it depends on many factors such as ones disposable income, etc... Maybe the Big Mac index will help



Senior Member
DemonPicaxeGuy (lets call that DPG for short). Speaking as a fellow colonial,just across the Tasman Sea,I think we'd best mention a 7 hours drive is considered trivial in many rural parts of Oz. Yikes- some sheep station roustabouts drive that far just for a beer on Fridays,with even their mail box (in UK terms London-Brighton)an hour away. What was that figure I once mentioned - Perth to Darwin is over 4000 km &amp; involves a weeks drive!

For those ignorant of Oz.geography,Lightning Ridge is an outback black opal mining town <A href='http://www.lightningridge.net.au ' Target=_Blank>External Web Link</a>,almost equidistant from Brisbane or Sydney.

There are numerous better value (&amp; closer in) places than this in Oz.in fact,but it's pretty academic really if no decent work is available. When the MUCH higher taxes,GST/VAT,fuel &amp; food costs of Europe/UK are factored in,life even in Oz. cities seems pretty cheap,especially with the super money able to be earned from &quot;2 weeks on/1 week off&quot; fly ins to enjoy the WA mining boom.

PS: Economics 101: Keep in mind heavy capital gain &amp; death duty taxes that may apply in many countries as well- the government may get all those property gains in the end ...

i've been thinking about going out there for a while and it's only recently that i've been able to convince the missus that it's a good idea
cost of living out there is a great deal lower in most respects
compared to what where we are currently we'll be a great deal better off


Senior Member
Having been raised in similar rural isolation (NZ) I'd say &quot;Do your homework&quot;. If you have kids or health issues ESPECIALLY check out the schooling &amp; medical options...

Rural COL may seem cheaper until you find the local stores charge x2/x3 what you'd normally pay in town for groceries etc,&amp; the selection will often be plastic &amp; pathetic. Say goodbye to popping down to DSE for a 1k resistor!

Frustrations with rural narrow mindedness can be a major issue for townies - the locals may be into guns,dogs,noisy machinery,heavy trucks at 2 in the morning, opal blasting,sprays &amp; the like. This may drive you or your missus crazy! Rural hierarchies are often pretty intimidating as well,&amp; folks may not take you seriously until you've 10 years under your belt. Even your existing big smoke attitudes towards (say) water,rubbish, fencing, privacy or property maintenance may upset them. Go &amp; camp there for a few months first to experience these things...

Lastly! Remember that while you are in such a rural bolt hole, economic events in the cities may move into yet another sphere &amp; prevent you EVER getting back into town. I've seen this with ex townie life-stylers here in NZ,who come to loathe the lonely &amp; isolated rural life,yet can't afford to move back as city prices have gone -GASP- even higher...


Senior Member
Couple of years ago, John Prescott, under pressure to provide more/cheaper homes for first time buyers in the UK, launched a competition. Build a house for &#163;60,000. The winning architect indeed built several of these units for no more than &#163;60k each in Milton Keynes (south UK). You can buy one if you like. &#163;295,000!

I call it the Yacht syndrome.
cheap land, live in the Falkland Islands. i heard that some council land was going for &#163;1 an acre! however, don't plan on spending your summers there.
or if you want to go really exotic, try this:


i visited Brunei earlier in the year and seriously considered moving there, no income tax, very cheap land and by far the most important: uber cheap fast internet. internet cafes charge &#163;0.30 per hour for broadband!!! also there is nearly no crime. the down side is the night life is a bit disappointing, but malaysia is just a couple hours drive away. just thinking about it makes me want to go back there.
we're taking a trip up there next week over the weekend i've picked up a bigger xd card for my camera so i'll be able to take plenty of pics
i'm even thinking of getting a postie bike (little yamaha thing) for the trips to brisbane of sydney although i might get sick of it after a while and just take the car..

toxicmouse ,
the 8 years i spent there was interesting everybody kept to themselves
and everyone spoke english of engrish to some degree or another
from what i've heard though the old language is almost not used anymore which is quite sad
thats another good bit about lightning ridge grass can't grow out there, infact most of the gardens for some of the places we're looking at are made up of cactus!

although i'm at a loss as to what i'm going to do with my lawn mower

Edited by - demonicpicaxeguy on 02/08/2007 08:32:11
I wouldn't be riding a piddly little postie motorbike up there or for that matter a
1,000 CC job and especially at night.
Been there done that, when a 250 LB ferral sow and 8 accompanying piglets run out in front of you at 2AM on the dirt track middle of no where.
Luckily the 400 LB Boar wasn't around or he may have eaten my 360 Honda then come looking for me. Skeeery stuff !
Then there are the ferral Goats, Kangaroos and even wild Camels are now becomming a problem. I'd be investing in a Mac Truck with a Mad Max style Bull Bar <img src="wink.gif" width=15 height=15 align=middle>

Edited by - Michael 2727 on 02/08/2007 08:48:14


Senior Member
Use for old mower - backup generator for charging your batteries:
<A href='http://www.theepicenter.com//tow082099.html' Target=_Blank>External Web Link</a>

i was thinking about that on the postie bike and i might just use the trusty toyota camry
i get around 550kms off 50 odd litres of fuel
but i think i'll get a bull bar for it and reinforce it, i had a cousin who had hit a kangaroo at 150ish in the middle of knowhere - there wasn't much left of the roo and the kingswood was a writeoff aparently was a little hard to explain to insurance company